April 11, 2015
When the sun’s out, I want ice cream – or better yet, a milkshake. I’ve loved milkshakes since I was a kid, but adult milkshakes (AKA boozy shakes) are even better. There are several places in Seattle that will give you a quality boozy shake (Hot Cakes being my personal fave) but nothing beats the variety at Lunchbox Lab. A chill restaurant to being with – they have excellent burgers and bomb tater tots – it only gets better with their grown-up shakes.
Did I mention the variety? I got the banana cream milkshake with vanilla rum. This satisfied both my love of banana desserts and my love of milkshakes. Oh and my love of alcohol. I’ve also had a very satisfying Oreo milkshake with whiskey. My friend got a Nutella milkshake with I-forget-what-tasty shot:
She sucked hers down – I took longer to finish. I’m usually good with half a milkshake, but I couldn’t let the rest of mine go to waste! Lunchbox Lab has an epic happy hour and pleasant outdoor seating with a fire pit. And they’re open late! Definitely on my “most beloved” Seattle restaurant list.
March 18, 2015
Food trucks can be hard to track down, so I was pleasantly surprised to stumble upon Biscuit Box last week in South Lake Union at lunchtime (not to be confused with the Seattle Biscuit Company, which is another biscuit food truck… that’s my kind of traffic jam). The Biscuit Box has two sides, sweet and salty – literally, the menus are on opposite sides of the window:
Well you can guess which side I went for (although the pork belly biscuit sandwich sounds like it deserves a return visit)! I chose the buttermilk biscuit with butter and strawberry freezer jam. I was surprised by the way they serve it – a buttered biscuit with a generous ladle of strawberry syrup-jam.
Yes, you have to eat it with a fork. Yes, it tastes amazing. It ends up being almost like strawberry shortcake, except no cream, and it’s a biscuit instead of shortcake… ok, so it’s different, but the idea is the same: the jam soaks into the biscuit. I will be back to try the savory options – thank you twitter for giving me the means to stalk this biscuity goodness.
February 12, 2015
You don’t have to love math to enjoy 3.14, a bakery in White Center, but it does help if you like pie. Which I do. It was a bit of a drive from Cap Hill, but I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the homey bakery. You’re not overwhelmed by the selection of baked goods, but there were plenty to choose from – and not just pie.
The owner was friendly and patient, and it was nice to be the only hipster in sight. I took my time and chose a couple cake balls, a blueberry muffin top, and a cherry mini-pie.
The red velvet cake ball (bottom left) didn’t do it for me, but the chocolate peanut butter one was everything a cake ball should be – dense, moist, almost like a truffle. It had strong peanut flavors and the chocolate was rich. As for the muffin top (top of the picture), I had never seen such a thing! Who would just sell tops of muffins? After eating it, I see why it’s a thing. It’s like a mini cookie-cake for breakfast! It was fresh-tasting and not at all dry, even the next day. No bitter aftertaste either, just flour and blueberry goodness.
The cherry pie was the winner. I don’t even love pie, especially cherry, but the owner recommended it. And I’m converted. I warmed it up two days later in the oven, and it tasted fresh, flaky, and buttery. The cherry filling wasn’t too sweet or too tart, and there was just the right ratio of filling to crust. This might be my new favorite pie. I just wish they were closer. 3.14, come to Cap Hill, or at least do some farmers markets!
January 27, 2015
In need of a sweet treat and a strong espresso one dark winter day, I took myself down to Columbia City to check out Empire Espresso. I had heard about their waffle concoctions – all sorts of exciting topping combinations (lime and powdered sugar!), and their coffee (single-origin, made for hipsters). I also knew it would be a cozy and friendly place to get some work done, and I was lucky to come at a time when it wasn’t jam-packed.
I got my espresso plus the nutella banana waffle. The coffee was intense and gave me the boost I needed to chip away at my never-ending supply of work. The waffle was large they sure didn’t hold back on the bananas:
Which was fine, since ever since I visited Oaxaca (see my “on the road” page) I’ve been obsessed with banana-based desserts. And nutella always works for me! My only complaint was that the waffle, while perfectly fresh and not over or undercooked, was a bit on the heavy/salty side. It seemed like it was cornmeal based but I could be wrong. In any case, I would have preferred a lighter, fluffier, and sweeter waffle. Nevertheless, I enjoyed my overall experience here and I can see why this place is so popular!
December 20, 2014
Trove, a new “concept restaurant” on Cap Hill is unique and inventive, without being too gimmicky. It’s a four-part restaurant: noodle bar, beverage bar, BBQ restaurant, and ice cream parlor. I went to 3 out of 4 (skipping the noodles) and was pretty pleased but I’ll just focus on the dessert portion.
Ok, so maybe it’s a little gimmicky. The ice cream section of the restaurant group is themed like an ice cream truck. You can get the parfaits from their walk-up window, or order it for dessert in the restaurant. It being winter, I did the latter. The menu offers two versions of each parfait: a classic take and a Korean fusion take (the restaurant overall is Korean-fusion). For example, you can get a “new school” Snickers parfait: black sesame cake, miso caramel, and candied peanuts. I went with the “old school” Snickers, pictured on the left:
My friend got the root beer float parfait (new-school style). I ended up wishing I had tried the more innovative new-school version because mine was a little bland. I liked it, but I think Frozen Custard does it better. I’ll be back to try the new-school options when it warms up!